While it isn’t a German auto, we never turn down the opportunity to keep people’s daily drivers in tip top shape. This little Civic came in to catch up on some past due services and to replace the lower control arm bushings (compliance bushings) on the front suspension. The front control arms essentially connect the bottom of the wheel hub to the subframe or chassis. There is a rubber bushing in the front and a rubber bushing in the rear that will rot away over time and will need replacement.
Here we see the bottom of the lower control arm. To replace the bushings they need to be removed.
You can slightly see the rubber bushing in the front of the control arm and the driver side is obviously cracking and due for replacement.
Then we get to the passenger side, and it was completely blown into multiple pieces.
With the arm out of the car, you can see what the new bushings should look like, and what the old ones look like in two pieces.
When I tried remove the control arm from the passenger side, the front bushing that was blown out was seized to the bolt. It was so rusted, the bolt was impossible to back out. 4 hours later, I finally had the bolt cut in 2 places and the arm removed. The limited space and hardened steel bolt made the cutting process almost impossible. Here you see one end of the bolt, the center section of the bushing (with that part of the bolt still in it), and the head of the bolt.
After inspecting the control arms for wear, I found the driver side arm was bent. This could have happened due to a pot hole, or maybe bumping a curb, who knows. The arms are pretty thin metal, so sometimes it doesn’t take much with these things. I felt it best to replace both arms rather than try and straighten the one. And since they come with new bushings already installed, it actually saved a little labor.
And one of the new arms in place.
Then it was time to catch up on some of the maintenance. A good inspection of the car including brakes, tires, suspension components, engine components etc, along with all the fluids was done. I changed out the dirty air filter and the spark plugs while I was in there. This car is ready for another 100k miles